Julie Scott, VP, GM, Cars Media Solutions

February 8, 2023
ASOTU was on the ground during the 2023 NADA Show and caught up with Julie Scott.
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Julie Scott is the VP and GM of Cars Media Solutions.

This episode of In The Dirt w/ ASOTU was brought to you by Cars.com

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Paul Daly: 0:04Okay, we are here with Julie Scott, VP of all things media, the media thing, the media things. There's a couple. There's a couple of media things going on around here. Thank you so much for spending a few minutes with you. We're going to ask you all the hard questions. Oh, now, yes, starting with? What's your favorite kind of hat?Julie Scott: 0:22

All right. All right. All right set up was that we may not rehearsed whatsoever

Paul Daly: 0:27

She started talking about this, and we're like, stop talking about it. We're gonna talk about it, because it's what people really care about.

Julie Scott: 0:31

This is what the people need to hear. So sitting down next to the two of you had these amazing black flat room hats, which I am a collector of at home in Chicago, I have a a wall with two shelves of black flat brim hats that I get from cool brands. favorite one is from I accidentally ended up at like kind of a terrible sushi restaurant in Hawaii, that exam guy, however, but they had the best black flat rims hat. That's where I would expect to find a good one

Kyle Mountsier: 1:00

amazing. Well, the good news is is just off camera, we have a black flat brim hat. Let's bring that in real quick for you. Because we were ready. We got prize and you're like, oh my gosh, well, here's Did you know this? I found this out just a little bit ago in Hawaii. The reason why the sushi ain't so great is because they actually import like 98% of the food into the country because they can't support the amount of tourism with just the local.

Julie Scott: 1:27

This makes a lot of sense. Easy. Well, lesson learned. When you want to good hack, go to sushi go to cut a light. When you want sushi, don't go to Hawaii. The first thing lesson,

Kyle Mountsier: 1:36

lesson learn? Well, you know what, that's interesting, because it actually I know this is crazy, we can can, we can connect.

Julie Scott: 1:43

Alright, I'm ready, ready for this connection.

Kyle Mountsier: 1:45

Because a lot of what the media shows is is not all that's put there. And a lot of what media is, is not all it's cracked up to be. But when you tie media in with the right way with content and data and solutions and all that type of stuff. When you create the ecosystem where the hat matches the sushi matches the communication beforehand matches the mass marketing of Hawaii saying come here for tourism, when you match all that together. And from what I know about the cars.com is that the heart of Alex Vetter and the heart of the company is to match all that together. How are you in your media ecosystem in charge of all things, media is starting to see where all of those lines are a lot more clear than they were and maybe our segmented industry prior?

Julie Scott: 2:33

Yeah, it's a good question. There's a lot to unpack there. But

Paul Daly: 2:37

one word answer, right.

Unknown: 2:39

And you guys are content creators, right? And so when you're creating content, you're also trying to think about who is the audience I'm trying to reach? Right? And that's how we think is who is the audience that a Dealer is trying to reach? If you're selling cars? Who do you want to reach car shoppers, and it's pretty simple when it comes down to it right? When you are going online, you go to cars.com? What are you shopping for?

Paul Daly: 3:03

Most likely a car or a car? Okay. Oh, yeah, I was like, as a trick quick trick question we are coming from

Julie Scott: 3:09

I kind of delivered the question a little bit tricky. So I apologize. But, but if you go to like Lowe's dot com you're searching for. Right? So if you're a Car Dealer, right, and you all of a sudden see that your agency or you're working with Google is running your ads on Lowe's, that's not relevant. That's not good placement. It's not even native to what the consumer is looking at when. When you're in Cars.com, you are in the mindset. So what we back to your question about how do we connect all this together? When someone comes to Cars.com, and they're looking for a car, on behalf of a dealer, what I want to make sure we're doing is following that consumer, right? Wherever they go off. In the internet. OTT, whereever it might be, when I think about what a Dealer wants, I'm trying to give them a more effective, more efficient, more relevant way to reach that end market shopper on Cars, and when they leave Cars. And so it's really connecting the experience for the consumer on behalf of the Cealer. I really think of myself as an agent on behalf of the Cealer. And Alex Vetter believes that right? You said it, he bleeds purple from the top down. And we are trying to do what's right for consumers and customers alike. Yeah,

Kyle Mountsier: 4:19

as an industry, we spend billions upon billions of marketing and ad dollars looking to find and attract and acquire customers. And what I hear you saying is that, like, efficiency does two things. It saves time and money typically, right? And so where are you utilizing that word efficiency to save time and money both for the dealer and the consumer at this point?

Julie Scott: 4:44

I'm gonna go to the very first thing you just said. I used to call it spray and pray. I got this money. Try and reach somebody. Right. I'll give you a really good example. And I will pick on Google a little bit because As

Paul Daly: 5:02

you can pick up a handle it

Julie Scott: 5:05

Google will tell you there are more in market shoppers for a vehicle than there is in the US population. Right? So you're talking about spring break. Okay? So efficiency means only reach people who are actually shopping for your vehicle. Right? Don't waste money on trying to spray and pray. And it's really quite simple. When I think about like the Cars.com shopper. You want to follow them appropriately. Right? And we're going to do that through video, social, display and search. We're not going to overdo it, we're gonna think about frequency, right? We're gonna think about when they convert, what action they're gonna take, what's their next action, we're gonna do in a smart way. So it makes the dealership look good, right? And we're not gonna waste the Dealers money doing it.

Kyle Mountsier: 5:52

I love you know, what, I haven't heard people say that type of mode a lot. It's like, we're just gonna hit people wherever they're at whenever they're at, because like, we need to acquire the customer. But really not just looking at frequency as a volume play, but also an efficiency play going? No, it actually only takes 7.3 touch points, or whatever the touch points that we recognize, instead of going, Well, if we can get them 12 times we're gonna get them 12 times. Right. And I think that that's, that's really key because as a consumer, right, there are some brands that I'm like, okay, stop already. It's like, it's like the it's like the high school, you know, person that's after you for a date. And it's like, never had that problem, you probably shouldn't be asking again, right? At this point, I might say there's gonna be stops

Paul Daly: 6:39

We're 2 steps away from a restraining order. Some businesses, you really do wish you could put a digital restraining order on? No, I understand that because you build up. And the worst part about that is you're making the consumer upset. And you're literally building like a resistance to your brand. Like, I will not go there. And some people will shake that off. But that's a real sentiment.

Julie Scott: 6:59

Yeah. You know, the funny thing too, is, you have such a short window to reach a consumer appropriately, right. So in Cars.com, we know 70% of our shoppers who come to the site are undecided on make, model and Dealer.

Paul Daly: 7:14

Wow. So they haven't even chosen the car

Unknown: 7:16

Less loyal than ever, right. And that's hard to hear whether you're an OEM or a Dealer, we also know that of those shoppers more than 50% are going to make a decision in 30 days, 30 days.

Paul Daly: 7:28

So that means they're 70% are unsure of what they even want to drive or who they are. And then within 30 days, half of them are going to make that final decision.

Julie Scott: 7:37

That's right. It's crazy, right. And I think during the pandemic, when the consumer started shopping differently, they were online more expecting more from their Dealer digitally, right. When that started happening, consumers started inventory shortages, everything got compact, now as inventory comes back, I think we're gonna see it spread out a little bit again. But I one of the things I think about if I'm a Dealer, right, I gotta reach out in market shopper. How, how often is my data refreshed? You're working with the data provider, it's typically every 30 days.

Paul Daly: 8:09

You're already done. 50% of those people made the decision done.

Julie Scott: 8:13

The data is already outdated. So you know, we try and think about real pure in market shoppers real time so our data is refreshed daily. You're always reaching somebody who was just recently shopping. Yeah, yeah, that's amazing. Yeah, yeah, drop in

Paul Daly: 8:28

knowledge and flat brim hats. Julie, it has been such a pleasure to spend a few minutes and get to know you a little bit. It makes us so happy that we get to contribute to your collection. And thank you for the work that you do and spending a few minutes with us today.

Kyle Mountsier: 8:41

Thank you for listening to in the dirt with ASOTU. We love the automotive industry and the people who make it run day in and day out. We would love to connect with you more through our daily dose of fun, a free email that you can sign up for at ASOTU.com That's a s o t u.com. We put our heart and soul into it every day. Thanks again for listening. Join us next time for more Conversations In the Dirt with ASOTU.

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